CAPITAL FOR BUSINESS START-UP By Victor Ofure Osehobo
Acknowledgements Capital for Business Startup is available as a Book, Audio, and Video CD. Itâ€˜s production is with the singular objective of bringing together in one format, all relevant knowledge, emerging entrepreneurs, bubbling with ideas need to get needed capital for business startup and sustainability. There are entrepreneurs, who do not know they can get capital from savings though they have never done any job. They do not know they can get capital from friends and family. Many know that commercial and microfinance banks offer business loans but do not know how to approach them. There are also investors who want to fund such new businesses because they offer hope for revolutionizing their profit mechanism and increase their wealth but entrepreneurs do not know how to access them. The book, and CDs of Capital for Business Startup targets this audience and Entrepreneurs who want to start or grow their business. This work would not have been possible without God who created me and gave me inspiration. I appreciate my wife, Oghomen for her love and support. I thank God for my children who made me a man, Osehoje, Onosemudianan, Osenonbhajimete, Osezele, Oselumenose and Oseigbokan. I also want to appreciate the support morally of my friends in the Information marketing sector, Caje, Ebalu, Ebojele, Ochoga. God bless you all. ÂŠ 2014 Victor Ofure Osehobo
CONTENT Chapter 1: Understanding Capital Chapter 2: Savings as capital Chapter 3: Capital from Friends and Family Chapter 4: Capital from Investors Chapter 5: Capital from Banks Chapter 6: Approaching Banks for Capital Chapter 7: Banks and Capital Products Chapter 8: Biographies of the Successful
Chapter 1: Understanding Capital It is money. Others call it capital. Whatever you choose to call it, the fact remains; it is finance needed to start your business as a new entrepreneur or to keep running an existing one. In a developing economy like Nigeria, we all know that securing finance is a key element, especially for new and small businesses. Many up-and-coming entrepreneurs find the task discouraging and do not even know how and where to begin. Before going about in search of capital to start your business you need to test the Business Idea and check if it is feasible, because, what you start with sometimes is rarely with what you end up. The key questions to help you evaluate your business idea are: 1. What is my customer profile? Your idea of a product or service may seem to you as the final solution, can you identify a clear customer base for it, beyond yourself? Ask what your customer's biggest pains are and how your product might help resolve them, says. When Facebook owner got the idea to start the business, he used family and friends in surveys to develop a psychographic analysis of his core customers, 2. What am I replacing? Whatever your idea is, someone out there is buying something else in its place. Ask yourself what makes your product compelling enough to replace what is already in the marketplace. This does not necessarily have to be limited to products that have a similar purpose as yours.
3. How do I demonstrate this idea to others? This means developing drawings or a working prototype. By figuring out how you can easily represent your idea to others, you will start to see how much footing it has, 4. Whom will I need on my team? In the early stages, you will need to figure out whom you can turn to for honest and informed advice about your ideas. Soon, you will need to think about whose brainpower you want on your side-whether in product development, marketing, IT, or another function. Find a way to approach such people to gauge their interest in getting involved. 5. What do I need? How can you actually make this idea happen? That requires asking what resources you will need, from factories to computers to office space. Make a list of all the key assets and figure out whether you can obtain them before you invest a lot of time and money in testing and product development. 6. How long will my purchasing cycle be? You want to know the purchase cycle for your product or service so you can estimate your upfront cash needs. With a longer purchasing cycle, you will need more money on the front end before you start bringing in revenue. If you are selling medical technology to a hospital, for instance, that transaction might take 18 months to complete. 7. What is a reasonable sales forecast? You want to analyze the actual operation of the business as much as possible to come up with a solid sales forecast. For example, if you want to open a restaurant, do not just base your revenue forecast on annual restaurant sales in
your city. For a more specific estimate, consider the size and seating capacity of your proposed restaurant, the expected average customer bill, and the hours of operation.
8. How much growth potential does my idea offer? Think about how big you want your business to be and figure out if your idea can meet your expectations. For example, if you are scripting a movie, you should realize that you might not grow as fast as if you are making something that can mass-produced like perfume or soap. 9. Do I possess the necessary skills? Having an idea and making it happen are two very different things. Be honest in assessing whether you are qualified to turn your idea into a business. If an idea requires highly technical skills or business experience that you lack, will you be able to find someone who can fill those gaps? 10. Can I see myself doing this for the next two years? Coming up with an idea can be exciting, but are you willing to dedicate your life to it for at least the next two years? Do you have support from family, friends, and mentors, and are you willing to make the necessary sacrifices? You have to look at opportunity cost and realize any new opportunity is going to take a tremendous amount of time and energy.â€? The new business is usually a Sole Proprietorship and the business starts with an individual who has the original idea. The
individual seeks for funds to pursue that idea, grow it into a successful business and subsequently employs more people to support its growth. Obtaining capital is a challenge in Nigeria. The lack of capital limits many individuals with new business ideas from seeing it come alive. Yet, no one can start any business without capital. Where the capital will come from is a big question many dare not ask because the answer is beyond imagination.
Types of capital The types of capital available for a small business start-up are several. Not many know that they can raise business capital from savings, from friend and family, besides the banks, which many dread because of their conditions for giving out capital. The income level of most Nigerians is very low. Hence, it is demanding to save enough to finance a business especially as unemployment is high and many with new business ideas have never had a paid job or low-income earner. Many who shun borrowing or taking a loan from friends and family do so because they do not see it as an option. Getting capital to start a small business may be relatively easy or very challenging, depending on your personal financial condition and business idea. The amount of financing you need is an additional factor that influences your options. Starting a new business in Nigeria is the most difficult task a Nigerian entrepreneur would encounter and financing that new business is more difficult. The Nigerian economy
(unfortunately) makes the process even more difficult but amidst these difficulties some people managed to start new and successful businesses in Nigeria. Although getting funds for a new business in Nigeria could be as difficult as passing through the eye of a needle, the truth is, it does happen.
Chapter 2: Savings as Capital Some persons have some savings and want to invest it in a business. It is your own money; and no doubt, about the success of the business, no pressure to pay back, and no pressure to work harder than you can. You can just relax, use the money, and do the business at your own pace. It is a very sweet way to finance a new business. Nevertheless, how much can one really save to finance a new business in Nigeria? A high paying job comes with the pressure of high profile lifestyle. People with very high paying job who spend only a little on day to day expenses and have little or no financial demands from friends and family, cannot save more than 50% of their monthly income. So how much can a Nigerian really save that will turn into a good enough business capital? At the end of the day, the aspiring entrepreneur would continue saving until old age sets in or be forced to start a smaller version of business.
Apart from this drawback, experts say using personal savings to finance a business is the easiest and the (second) best way to finance a new business. How to Generate Savings Here are some tips on how to Generate Savings 1. When you get money as dash or gifts, divide it in half. Put half in a savings account/savings box, and keep the rest for yourself! Of the 50% you keep for yourself, it is a good idea to divide that in half two. One half is for random spending like when you go out with a friend and the other half is for saving up for the business idea. 2. As a teen, Youth or student, begin with asking your parents if there is any work to do around the house. Let us say the kitchen or room needs cleaning, and then charge for its cleaning or even more depending on the mess. Do this regularly, and you will be earning money fast. 3. Cut the bush, clear the gutter, rake leaves, washes clothes, for a fee or do whatever your parents consider reasonable. 4. Ask neighbors if you can Cut the bush, clear the gutter, rake leaves, washes clothes, for them, or any other chore for a price that they think is reasonable. 5. Babysit. This is most common with girls. Look around your neighborhood for mothers who work and have kids and need help caring for the babies while they go to work and cannot afford crèches. Calculate prices per hour. Tips on how to handle savings • Make a list of things you want in order of usefulness • Avoid itch buys if you are saving up for something big. • Do not steal other's money.
• Remember, this is all your hard work! Do not buy anything just because you saw a friend wearing it. Restyle old clothes. • Have your own personality and do not be an IMITATOR! • Collect change when you can • Instead of going for new clothes, search resale shops for used clothes, and other needs for some great deals.
Chapter 3: Capital from Friends and Family Getting capital from friend and Family may not be a viable option because if you are poor, it is also likely that you have a group of friends that are also poor. Close family members-mother, father, sister, brother, son, or daughter--may be a good source of capital if they have the capacity and wish to help you start a new business. Nevertheless, unless they exactly tell you putting their money into your business is a "gift" or investment--upon which you need to give a "return"--be sure to create a legal promissory note, with all the conditions--interest rate, monthly payment, and maturity date—like a bank would require. It is essential to define the financial conditions since your personal
relationship with friends and family is more important than their monetary assistance. These is a more relaxed way of getting business capital, no crazy pressure to pay back and no interest but will a friend or Family trust you or believe in your proposed business enough to loan you a huge amount of hard-earned money? Do Nigerians really lend big amount of money to their friends and family to start businesses? Family members are more likely to lend a big amount and take a new business risk for a new entrepreneur (if they have the money). Alhaji Aliko Dangote started his multi-trillion Naira business with this method; his uncle gave him a business loan. It is common for owners of small and start-up businesses to look to relatives and friends for support when they need additional business funding. This can work well, but often these arrangements are informal and based purely on trust and unwritten assurances. It is not just enough to borrow from or ask friends and family to invest. There are necessary rules to follow.
Defining capital Before approaching friend and family for capital to start or support your business, be clear about what your requirements are. Loan: If your business needs immediate and relatively short-term funds, a loan may be most appropriate. Decide whether you can afford to pay interest, or whether you are seeking an interest-free loan. Investment: If the business needs longer term or permanent funding, you may want to
consider giving your investor a share in the business. If you choose this option, think about whether you need an active partner or shareholder. If you are just looking for a passive partner who will be involved in the business, make this clear. Experts say as a rule, retaining over 70 per cent of the shares issued should ensure you keep control. Explain to your investors that the money they invest is risk capital - they may not get it back. However, if your business goes well, they might look for returns that will reflect the risk, i.e. greater than they would receive if they placed their money in a bank, for example. Manage expectations Remember that whether they make a loan to your business or take a share in it, the investor should not lend or invest more than they can afford to lose. Ask the friend or family to set out their hopes clearly and plan how you will manage those expectations. This can help create a win-win situation for you and for your investor. The Good side of borrowing from friends and family There are clear benefits to approaching friends and family for a loan or investment. Generally, they will be flexible. On a practical level, they may offer loans without security or accept lower security than banks. They may also lend monies interest-free or at a low rate. For both loans and investments, friends and family may allow you a longer period than formal lenders to repay the loan or start making returns on their investment. They may also seek a lower rate of initial return.
On a personal level, they already know your character and circumstances and so are less likely to need a detailed business plan. However, transactions of this nature can be intricate. Any misunderstandings about the terms of the arrangement can permanently damage relationships. There is a risk that investors may offer you more than they can afford to lose, or that they will demand their money back at a time, which suits them but not your business. They may also want to get involved in running the business, which may not be appropriate. It is a good idea to approach a loan or investment from friends and family in the same way you would a formal lender: • Do not rely on a verbal agreement - draw up a formal written agreement. See the page in this guide on setting up a loan or investment with friends or family. • Be clear about your own expectations make sure that you communicate how long you need the money. • For loans, be clear about the repayment level you can afford. • For investments, be definite about how much of the shares or profit the investor will receive - and when to make any returns • Clarify whether an investor will have any financial liabilities for your business activity. • Think twice about approaching a friend or family member for a loan or investment if other sources of finance have turned you down. You may need to analyze the reasons for this and review your business proposition. Remember that if your business fails, lenders and investors may lose their money • Pass on the reasons that other prospective sources of finance gave for turning you down.
In addition, if you are setting up a loan or investment with friends and family, it is best practice to approach it as if it were a formal finance deal. This will involve presenting your business plan, preparing a business case, taking professional advice and having a formal, written agreement. What this means is that before approaching a friend and family, you should create or revise your business plan so that you can show them the new plan for your business and their investment in it. Let them know what use their money is being put and what the bigger picture for your business is. Make them aware of all risks and worst-case scenarios. You need to make a business case to a prospective lender or investor that will persuade them to finance your business instead of their own personal plans. It is sensible for both you and your lender or investor to get professional advice if the amounts involved are substantial. This will help you both to consider factors objectively, without feeling under pressure and to reach a decision that you feel comfortable with and can rationalize. If both parties agree to proceed, always formalize the arrangement with a written agreement. This will help you to prevent future misunderstandings and provide a solid basis for the business relationship. For loans, the agreement should cover the size and terms, the repayment plan and interest rates. Investment agreements are more complex and should include the amount invested, the allocation of profits and shares, roles and responsibilities of both parties and a repayment schedule. You should seek professional advice.
Legal agreements An independent person should witness legal agreements, which should contain: the nature and timing of return on the money - such as how much a loan is for and whether an investor is to receive profits or a share in the business a repayment schedule or timed plan of dividend payments - include dates, amounts and interest on loans if applicable respective responsibilities - for an investor this should state whether they are to have a role or any liabilities in the business how problems will be resolved This will ensure both parties are clear about the terms on which the money comes in. Dangers in capital from friends and family Having looked at friends and family as sources of capital for business, the question is should the option be adopted at all? It can be tempting to ask friends or relatives when you need to borrow some money. Nevertheless, you need to think carefully about whether you can afford to repay the money and can cope with what might happen if you cannot afford to pay it back. When it is successful, borrowing from a family member can provide emergency money and help you avoid forms of borrowing with very high interest rates, such as payday loans or doorstep lending. If both parties are certain that – if a debt not repaid – it will not harm a relationship with a family member then this is a good option as it is normally interest free. If you are borrowing from a friend, be aware that if the loan not repaid, could end the friendship.
Chapter 4: Capital from Investors An investor is someone who commits capital into a business in order to gain financial returns from it. It is the best thing that can happen to that business though getting an investor is not that easy in Nigeria. Investors usually have a lot of money but simply do not have the business idea or the time and energy to do the business. An attractive, exclusive, and lucrative looking business idea will make the process of getting an investor easier. Money from an investor could be very huge, no interest, no collateral, no pay back (the investor simply share the profit with you at an agreed ratio); this is definitely the best way to finance a new business in Nigeria. Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook started his billion-dollar business with the help of an investor. In Nigeria, the three young people of jobberman.com also used this method. They actually started the business with their own funds, but the investor came in later, pumped money into the business and took it to the next level. Why getting Investors is difficult Very few entrepreneurs get investors. Here are reasons for this. 1. Investorsâ€™ system for evaluating entrepreneurs is random and wasteful. When you think about it, the methodology investors employ to find and qualify a potentially viable entrepreneur places almost all the responsibility on the entrepreneur. Once the entrepreneur has an idea, they must take the initiative to package it and promote it all to potentially interested investors.
The two problems with that system are: * It is the entrepreneur who decides what information gets presented, and * Everyone who receives this information must process it from a cold start. To illustrate how ridiculous this system is, it would be the equivalent of the aspiring entrepreneur going into a commercial bank to ask for a loan, beginning by filling out their application form, you just create your own. 2. Entrepreneurs do not understand the difference between having a need for capital and being ready to ask for it. In a system where the entrepreneur chooses the application, it is not surprising that their timing for when to submit that application is often discordant with the very investors they are trying to impress. The reason is entrepreneurs are motivated to seek capital based on need, not readiness. What this means is when an entrepreneurâ€™s drive is by a strong sense of need, the message they send to an investor is one or more of the following: Entrepreneurs often struggle over whether to fork over their own money vs. paying someone who will not deliver, leading to a freeze on progress and a slow painful death of their vision. Admittedly, the entrepreneurial industry is flush with charlatans just waiting to take advantage of a vulnerable entrepreneur. However, a far bigger problem is that many entrepreneurs with stellar ideas simply do not understand that building a business requires tons of sacrifice (including money), and they are just not willing to pay the price. So how do you deal with this problem? There are two ways to approach it: 1. From the investor's perspective:
Always look for entrepreneurs who demonstrate to us their willingness to "put their money where their mouth is" and who clearly "have skin in the game."
2. From the entrepreneur's perspective: Do not hire anyone without checking their references thoroughly. Talk to previous clients. Be wary of "guarantees." Look for resources that will take at least part of their reward based on the success of their service. That way, they know they must perform to be paid "big" Running your business should be a lot like running your household--you know it is going to cost money and your resources are limited. So, be prudent on how you invest your limited capital, but realize that an investment is required. Have a plan and follow it as long as it is working. Be flexible, be tough, and be open to new ideas. Not everything will work as you planned. How to Find Investors When you are ready to start talking to investors, one of the most challenging parts can be just that: actually talking to investors. Most investors receive dozens of pitches or proposals every day and simply do not have time to go through not to mention meeting with everyone. To make it more difficult, first-time entrepreneurs need to speak with so many investors before closing a round of funding. Therefore, as a new entrepreneur, you are going to need to identify dozens of people who could potentially be interested in your company. Here are some actions that may be useful in getting meetings with the right people.
1. Build an Angel List Profile In many parts of the world, an Angel List is a great way to both learn about investors and let them learn about you. Creating a profileâ€” including specific info about your company, product, and team membersâ€”makes it easy for people who are interested in your space to find you. Once you have created it, share your profile with friends, and professional acquaintances and request references. When people follow your company, it will show up to others they know. 2. Create a Strategic List of Investors You would like to meet with Given the odds of any individual meeting resulting in an investment, it is easy to want to cast as wide a net as possible. However, given that there are tens of people who are willing to make angel investments, you can save yourself a lot of time and hassle if you focus your initial efforts on the those investors who are most likely to be a good fit for your company. (You can always expand the list later.) Fellow entrepreneurs are an invaluable resource for helping you identify potentially interested investors not yet on your radar, as well as for flagging investors, difficult to work with or not actively investing. 3. Comb Your Networks Because investors receive so many pitches, they often highly favor companies that are introduced by a common contact. So once, you have a list of investors you would like to meet with, go through it person-byperson and see if you have any mutual acquaintances. However, before you ask your
contacts for an introduction, get together with them first so you can show them how awesome your company is. Ideally, your common connection should feel like he or she is doing a favor for both you and the investor by making the intro. 4. Thoughtfully Craft Your Own Introduction Of course, there will investors you cannot find an introduction to. When this is the case, you simply need to be more thoughtful and selective about who you reach out to, crafting emails that prove you’re not just sending out hundreds of cold emails to investors. 5. Give Investors a Reason to Reach Out to You As much as your company wants to find great investors, investors also want to find great companies—meaning the courtship goes both ways. So, make sure you spend some time putting yourself out there. Even if your product is not live, you can still generate attention for your team and your mission via thought leadership. Now, even with the best fundraising tactics, be prepared to be turned down by investors or not hear back. Do not let that get to you, but also do not be afraid to be diligent about following up in a professional manner. If you do not hear back in a week, send a quick follow up. After that, continue following up when you have news to share. This also applies to investors you have met with but have not heard from since. You’re going to hear a lot of “Nos”—but that just makes the first time you hear “Yes!” that much more exciting. Why seek investors?
One businessman said if you can avoid it donâ€™t go looking for Investors for your new business, because, 1. It is almost impossible to get investment for your very first startup. If you do not have startup experience, get somebody on your team who does. In addition, if you have not, and nobody in your team has either, that makes it very hard. 2. You are selling ownership. Investors write checks to own a serious portion of your business. Once you get investment, you do not own your entire company. 3. Investors are bosses. You are not your own person when you have investors; you are part of a team. You cannot decide everything by yourself. Politics matter. Investor relations matter. If you screw up, you do it in front of other people, and it hurts those people. 4. Valuation is critical to them and you. Simply put, valuation means the price. If you want to give only 10 percent of your company to investors who pay N100, 000, you are saying your company is worth one million Naira. 5. Investors do not make money until there is a liquidity event. That is why we always talk about exit strategies. You can be the worldâ€™s happiest, healthiest, most cash-independent company, but your investors will not be happy until you get them cash back. The win is getting money back out of the company. Some big company stock buyers like dividends. Startup investors do not. 6. If it is not scalable, forget it. The real growth opportunities are scalable. It used to be products only, but now there are some scalable services, like web services, for example. However, if doubling your sales means doubling
your headcount, then investors are not going to be interested. 7. If it is not defensible, it is tough going at best. If anybody can do it, then investors are not interested. 8. Investors are not generic. Some become collaborative partners and even mentors, some are nagging insensitive critics. Some help, some do not. 9. Just being financed does not mean you have succeeded. You have not won the race when you get that cheques, you need to use and get the business succeed. 10. Investors sometimes take your company from you.
Chapter 5: Capital from Banks Nigeria has many commercial and microfinance banks that pride themselves about their commitment to helping individuals with capital to set up or loans to run small businesses. However, it is common knowledge that getting the business loans from them is very difficult. Most banks cannot help new entrepreneurs to start up unless they are up and running and have grown to a point where they have more organization, the knowledge to manage millions of Naira, and possess an established market share. These conditions are tough for Sole proprietorships with two employees and struggling to create a brand. The reasons are that individuals, who want to, do not know how to approach the banks in terms of qualifications or requirements. Empowering them with necessary information that can help them start or keep their
businesses running successfully, is why this guide is available. Available Loans in Nigeria A loan is credit, usually in the form of cash that you borrow and repay over an agreed length of time. Banks, survive mainly from providing businesses with loans. The loan is usually a lump sum payment and the borrower pays interest on the full amount. As well as repaying the amount you have borrowed, you normally have to pay interest on a loan. Banks enjoy those with excellent credit and sufficient assets to pledge as collateral or have few assets available for security. The amount will depend on: • how long you need the loan for, how much you borrow and whether the loan is ‘secured’ e.g. if you own a home or property or any other approved asset, and agree to transfer ownership to the bank if you don’t keep up your payments and • The reasons for getting the loan: Loans are generally suitable for start-up capital in instances where the amount of money you need will not change. Advantages of taking loans: •
unlike overdrafts, loans are not repayable on demand - this means that you are guaranteed the money for the whole term • loans can be tied to the lifetime of equipment or other assets you are borrowing the money to pay for • you will not have to give the lender a percentage of your profits or a share in your company Disadvantages include:
• Loans are not very flexible – e.g. you may have to pay charges if you repay early • you might struggle to meet monthly payments if your customers don’t pay you • if your loan is secured against your personal property or assets (e.g. your home) you could lose them if you don’t keep up the payments • the cost of repayments for variable rate loans can change, making it harder to plan your finances • The interest rate may be, fixed, so it won’t change for the length of the loan; variable, so it will change with the Bank rate or the bank’s cost of borrowing Different Nigerian banks provide various types of loans for rents, commercial mortgage, home mortgage, car loans, construction loans, educational loans, assets financing and business loans. Business Loans Business loan provides financial aid for either small businesses that are in need of capital or large ones that need additional funding for expansion. Business loans could vary depending on the bank giving it out.
Overdrafts One type of business loan is overdrafts. An overdraft means overdrawing from your current account. In other words, the account holder withdraws more money from the account than what he/she has. If the amount overdrawn is within the limits of a prior agreement, there is interest charged at an agreed rate.
Term Loan This is a loan with a fixed date for which its interests are payable. Term loans are of two types - secured and unsecured. In secured loans, the collateral can be a property, business premises, or machinery and will usually have lower interest rates than an unsecured one. All the above refers to loans from commercial banks, however besides commercial banks, microfinance banks take more risks and offer small business loans, to start a business, though, they charge higher interest rates. Getting Bank Loans We have said that before a business starts operation, a loan is often necessary to keep things moving. For this, the bank is the best source and to get a good business bank loan depends on the nature of the business. Overview of Small Business Bank Loans The key thing to know about small business bank loans is that the business idea owner or promoterâ€™s personal credit is a criterion. If you have started the business or it has a long and successful history, you would not be reading this. Instead, you would have lenders beating down your door with loan offers.
Building a Foundation for Business Bank Loans You need to open and operate a valid account with a bank for up to six months or a year to qualify for a loan. Open the account with your own names or a business name, (e.g. Osaro and Sons), but not after registering the name with the Corporate Affairs Commission. (Read our
book HOW TO REGISTER YOUR BUSINESS LEGALLY) This is what makes you a viable candidate for a bank loan. If you have savings as mentioned earlier, put it in this account and begin build a credit history to give banks an idea of how responsible you are. If you are eying a loan from the bank, over time, you will want to build credit for your business and stop using personal credit. Business credit is similar to personal credit, but it is important to have both. Keeping things separate can help protect (and build) the value of your business and your personal assets will be safer as well. Specifics of Bank Loans Now that we are sure you are a good customer to the bank, let us move forward. The bank loans come in a variety of flavors, from a variety of sources. For brand-new businesses, or those who might be more of a risk, you will want to know a few banks and the basics of bank loans. The next chapter will alert you to some funding sources in typical banks.
Chapter 6: Approaching a bank for capital
Obtaining a small business loan to start a business can be difficult in that there is a great deal of preparation that goes into approaching a bank and applying for the loan. Regardless of which type of small business loan you choose, ensure you have all of the needed materials for your loan application before you go to the bank and fill out the application. Step 1: Write a business plan. One of the first items a commercial bank requests for a start-up small business is a written business plan. If needed, hire a business plan writer to assist you in putting the plan together. The business plan shows lenders that you have a solid idea of how you expect the business to earn money and to repay the loan. A clearly prepared and well-researched business plan shows how much dedication and passion you have for your business. Step 2: Speak with your personal bank. Many do not have a bank account and want a bank loan. Owning a bank account is a first step towards getting a loan for your business. Banks are only keen on giving loans out to customers not ghosts. So start by opening a bank account. Operate the bank account for a period to establish a relationship, before approaching the bank for a loan. Since you have an established relationship with the bank, you have a better chance of obtaining a business loan from it. As in the case of any other loans, in business loans also credit worthiness is evaluated by your repayment capacity and reliability. For this, banks will analyze the financial statements and records of your account. The amount you have personally saved and are willing to invest into your business, are important from the bank's perspective as it shows how confident you are about it.
For those venturing into business for the first time, it will be a bit tough to convince the bank that you are a trust worthy client. Banks in such cases will look into your background, credit history, education, business experience, business plan and its feasibility, assets and liabilities. Find out if the bank offers small business loans, and ask for an application and approval guidelines for small business start-up loans. Step 3: Loan guidelines Review the lender’s loan guidelines and work on fulfilling each one. Each bank has different criteria it expects small businesses and their owners to meet in order to qualify for a small business loan. Review the bank’s guidelines carefully, so you can prepare the documents, application and other information required to improve your chance for approval. Setting you up from the beginning to make the process easier (i.e. accounting systems, etc.) • Be prepared; be thorough; be truthful. • Choose your lending institution carefully. Larger banks tend to shy away from small loans as they are less profitable and take the same amount of underwriting and servicing. That does not mean large banks do not make small loans; it is just more difficult. Step 4:
Approach banks or lending institutions where you are a customer. Talk to a lending officer and find out exactly what documentation they require. Be thorough, bring everything they ask.
Many loan applications are denied or face unnecessary hurdles because of incomplete applications. Even before, you start gathering and organizing the information required by lenders to consider your application, you should educate yourself regarding business loans so you can understand and discuss intelligently with the lending officers when the time comes. Basic information necessary: Different lenders may require more or fewer documents, but in general, you will need: • Personal and business credit history, passbooks, bank ids, deposit slips • Personal and business financial statements for existing and startup businesses and as well as a projected financial statement • Strong, detailed business plan (including personal information such as bios, education, etc.) • Cash flow projections for at least a year, and • Personal guaranties from all principal owners of the business Step 5: Submit complete loan application Once you have completed the application and met all of the requirements, submit your complete loan application to the bank. Include a copy of the business plan with your application package. Guidelines to applying for small business loan: Different banks or lending institutions have different criteria they look for in making small business loans. They also have different
standards, but in general, in order to consider your application for a small business loan, banks will require: • Sound business purpose: The loan must be for a sound business purpose. The business must be eligible based on size, use of loan proceeds, and the nature of the business (no lending) • Good character: You and your partner(s) must have good character, have experience and good personal and/or business credit history Character is a key that is considered by banks before giving out loans but it cannot be considered in isolation. As a lender, character is about the most important thing you should consider when you want to grant facilities to people. However, because of the rate of failure, character is no longer considered in seclusion; so, collateral too is given importance. However, character remains an important factor that lenders consider. • Ability to pay back the loan- reasonable to strong collateral (personal and business assets) is very important. If the loan is to be fully secured, banks will not decline a request to guaranty a loan if the only unfavorable factor is insufficient collateral. In addition, of course, owners must have personal equity investment in the business/skin in the game. Size of loans Small businesses come in many sizes, from a start-up of a one-person company to hundreds of employees, and their financial needs vary accordingly, so “typical” also varies. For new entrepreneurs banks are even working out schemes of sanctioning loans based on the good record of accomplishment of their existing or extinguished loans.
However, at the same time, taking too much loans would restrict your credit worthiness and will create a negative impression that you are having too much liabilities. Having insurance attached to your property/ equipment is a cushion for bank credit managers to sanction the loan as it is always the concern of the bank, the security and the risk patterns attached with each business. Some banks even insist on having insurance. Therefore, a clear and professional business plan is very important before approaching a bank. You should also have a thorough knowledge about the market of your products and how you are going to operate. Findings overtime have shown that the major reason small businesses fail is they find it hard to stand the test of time because of competition from big firms. Whether your business is a new or going concern, learning the basics of raising capital will go a long way in ensuring that your small outfit stays in business. Financial experts, however, believe that there should be varieties of money sources for small businesses, to survive, including grants, loans and other venture capital variants. However, in Nigeria, where leaders and policy makers have continually failed to do the right things, there are not many grants available to entrepreneurs at the local, state or federal level to start or grow their businesses.
Last wordsâ€Ś It is a bit difficult for entrepreneurs to get loans for start-up businesses from deposit money banks in Nigeria. Deposit money banks give loans to existing business owners but some micro-finance banks still grant loans to start-up businesses with attractive collaterals. It is good to start a business on your own and maintain a good record of accomplishment to get loans later on to expand the business. If you can maintain your business well for a period of 12 months, it will be easy to get a loan because if the business can do well for a period of one year, there will not be any need for elaborate feasibility report. The record of accomplishment of a company is very important. Therefore, businesses with good records of accomplishment can have easy access to loan facilities. For entrepreneurs that are just starting their businesses, micro-finance banks remain the best place to go. It is better to acquire one's capital assets from non-interest loans or from personal funds, while the working capital can be sourced from banks. For an entrepreneur that is just setting up a business, the capital assets should come from non-interest funds or from one's personal
funds, and not from funds that are high in interest. Those who know say it is better to get your working capital from loans. In that way, you will be able to turn it around and repay. On interest rate, the ideal thing is to compare different interest rates and go for the lowest among them. Ordinarily, any single digit interest rate is good for any entrepreneur, who wants to acquire a loan. However, you will hardly get that anywhere in Nigeria. However, entrepreneurs should compare interest rates from different lenders and go for the lowest available ones' that will be easy to repay. As an entrepreneur, you need to check your monthly return with what you will be paying the bank on a monthly basis. If what you will be earning as profit is less than what you are expected to pay back on a monthly basis to offset your loan, then the loan is not favorable.
Chapter 7: Zenith Bank:
Banks and Capital Products
For an example, Zenith Bank has a Small business department, built on a clear understanding of clients' (Small and Medium scale enterprises, SMEs) business operations and requirements. The bank also claims that this department is driven by innovative thinking to guarantee the provision of creative solutions to its clients' business problems. The qualifying criteria for equity investment in a company under SMEEIS as approved by the executive management of Zenith Bank are: • Prospecting SME must be a limited liability company duly registered with CAC and should have an account with the Bank • Focus will centre mainly on growing small businesses with established market niche and credible management team. • The Bank will not participate in the funding of enterprises engaged in commerce (trading), banking, and other financial services e.g. insurance, stock broking, etc. • Tenor of Investment is minimum of three years and maximum of five years. • The Bank's equity investment in an SME shall be N20 million (minimum) and N500 million (maximum). • Prospecting company must not be involved in any pending litigation case instituted against it or by itself. Conditions for Funding • The Bank shall have a seat on the Board of the SME • The Bank will be involved in the appointment of a suitably qualified Financial Controller • The company will execute an Equity Investment Agreement and Domiciliation of Sales Proceeds Agreement prior to disbursement.
• The Funds shall be tied to a project preferably acquisition of specific fixed assets and/or working capital support. • Promoters of the company should not be current directors or employees of banks. • Checklist of documents required for accessing SMEEIS Funds in the Bank: CTC of Certificate of Incorporation CTC of Form C02 and Form C07 CTC of Memo and Articles of Association Current tax clearance certificates of company and directors of company Completion of pre-qualification form for SMEIS. Letter of application by the prospecting Investee company Comprehensive business plan of the project Current valuation report by a reputable Professional Valuer & Comprehensive Insurance Policy over company’s assets. Three years audited reports for existing company, whilst for start-ups, current statement of affairs (Management account) and projections. Details are available at the banks’ branches nationwide. Ecobank: Ecobank has a Business Banking package that is out to support and grow businesses. Are you planning to start or expand your business? Ecobank can help you with finance. Ecobank offers a range of business products and services designed to help support and grow business. It says it gives out comprehensive and diverse credit offerings. Details are available at the banks’ branches nationwide.
Guaranty Trust Bank The bank acknowledges that the Small and Medium Scale Enterprise (SME) sector is vital to the development of every economy and says it is fully convinced that Nigerian SMEs are the core conduit for sustainable job creation, rapid industrialization and poverty alleviation. It is therefore keen on providing our SME customers with an array of products and services to promote business growth and ensure sustainable wealth creation. Guaranty Trust Bank says it is dedicated to our cause as a customer centric bank and constantly seek ways to add measurable value to businesses by offering loans and advances to fit various financial needs: SME Term Loan (Build or Buy): This is a medium to long term facility aimed at assisting
established and well-structured schools in the expansion of their landed properties to meet obvious or anticipated business demand. The tenor spans from 3 to 10 years, giving schools funds up to 400million. Invoice Discount Facility: Is a short-term borrowing facility, which provides a quick cash flow solution to your business needs. Your business can draw money against invoices (receivables) issued before your clients pay for products supplied or services rendered. Up to 70% of the value of confirmed invoices can be advanced for a set period of 30-90 days prior to when payment is made. Business Loans: In keeping with our belief, that customers and their needs are unique, the bank strives to provide tailor-made and enduring solutions to their credit needs. At your request, we undertake preliminary credit appraisal within 48 hours and discuss with you, to determine the need for final appraisal or otherwise. Pricing for the bank facilities are competitive and in tune with the Central Bank of Nigeria guidelines. Available loans include Working Capital Finance (Overdraft), Short and Medium Term Loans, Import Finance, Leases, Contract Financing, Oil Services Local Contractor Credit Facility Scheme, Bonds and Guarantees, Project Finance, Cheques Purchase Details are available at the banksâ€™ branches nationwide.
ACCESS bank Loans and Credit Lines ACCESS bank says it was formed specifically to assist businesses of all sizes. Itâ€™s relationshipbanking approach ensures that you and your business will receive efficient and courteous service from experienced business bankers that live and work in the Omaha area. We can customize a financing package that meets the needs of your business! ACCESS bank offers the following credit products:
Type of Need ACCESS bank Business Loan, Short Term Credit Options, Business Line of Credit, Business Overdraft Line of Credit, Business Credit Card, Long Term Credit Options Term Loan, Real Estate Financing. Other Programs Real Estate Construction Financing, Small Business Administration Loans & Lines, Letters of Credit, Working Capital Facility It also offers finance solutions that enable businesses manage their working capital/operating cycle. These solutions include overdraft and short-term loans. To assist businesses with sufficient funds to satisfy both maturing short-term obligations and upcoming operational expenses Asset Acquisition: For acquisition of new equipment and business assets. To finance the acquisition of plant and machinery and other assets for business expansion. Commercial Mortgages: Long-term loans typically used to acquire, refinance, or redevelop commercial properties
To assist businesses break free of restrictive lease agreements through acquisition of commercial properties such as office buildings, shopping centers, industrial warehouses, or apartment complexes suited to your budget and with the ease of long-term repayment Details are available at the banksâ€™ branches nationwide.
FIRST Bank FIRST Bank offers secured Term Loan. This product is designed to provide a structured and controllable mechanism through which First Bank may provide finance to retail organizations with annual turnover of N500 million and below in all segments of the economy to finance capital projects like new technology acquisition, asset replacement etc. Its features are N40 million as Maximum amount, Maximum tenor of 36 months while the Facility is limited to 50% of the last six (6) months turnover. The Collateral â€“ Legal
Mortgage over property in First Bank acceptable Locations or Treasury Bills/Fixed Term Deposit First Bank offers the Secured Term Loan Product to small and medium scale businesses with annual turnover of N500 million and below. The business account would be domiciled in First Bank for the period of the loan. The amount any business organization can get will ultimately be determined by the cash inflow from their business, evidenced in their bank statement of account. The bank would require either real properties or treasury bills/fixed term deposit as collateral. Properties that may be accepted as collateral must have either of a Government issued Certificate of Ownership and a registered deed of Assignment, Deed of Sub Lease or Deed of Conveyance These products may be availed by new customers of First Bank with suitable cash flow. Details are available at the banksâ€™ branches nationwide.
SKYE BANK Business Loans The Project Finance Unit focuses on Public Private Partnership (PPP), Real Estate Development, Education, Construction and Power Projects. Other major services include Financial Advisory: We assist in determining optimal funding mix for projects, identifying the sources,
raising the financing on convenient terms, and managing the project for repayment. Projects Finance: We have vast experience financing projects and our sector expertise includes roads, health, leisure, property development and energy. The financing types include, but not limited to the followings, Term Loan and Advances, Loan Syndication, Equity/Debt Financing, Multilateral Financing Arrangement, Bridging Finance, Lease Finance, Bonds, Guarantees & Indemnities Financial Models: Our team specializes in building best practice financial models, focusing on a transparent model structure and a clear crisp modeling style. We apply these techniques to support a range of business critical decisions across a number of sectors including property, energy as well as PPP projects. The banks financial models also serve as veritable tool for Risk Management. Project Management: We have a team of experienced professionals who oversee the execution of all our projects to ensure that the projects are completed to time, at the budgeted cost and at the required quality. This will ensure that stakeholdersâ€™ objectives are realized.
Mainstreet bank Every Mainstreet Bank Term Loan is designed to meet specific financial needs of Nigerian businesses. Its loans are tailor-made to suit the short, medium and long-term aspirations of Nigerian businesses. Short Term Loans: Repayable in under Two (2) years; Medium Term Loans: Three (3) to Five (5) years
duration, Long Term Loans: Five (5) years and above duration; Repayment plans are designed to fit business cash flow while Interest rates are industry standard. Funds can be in foreign currencies while Loan repayment holidayâ€”customers can enjoy this at the beginning and during loan term.
LAPO (Lift Above Poverty Organization) LAPO (Lift Above Poverty Organization) established in 1987, is an NGO in Nigeria that runs a micro-finance bank (MFB); which is one
of the Nigerian banks that give out loans without collateral . The LAPO Microfinance Bank Limited is a pro-poor financial institution committed to improving the quality of life of the poor through the provision of credit, savings instruments and other financial services. Benefits of becoming a LAPO client 1. Small amount of installment, therefore making repayment schedule least stressful. 2. Transactions cost minimal, services to the doorstep of clients
3. Low cost of service 4. No collateral is needed 5. No extensive documentary work needed 6. Benefit from diversified clients training programme. Requirements for LAPO Trader's Loan • Fill a registration form • Open account with 10% of the amount you want to get as loan • Two Guarantors (Note: They will be visited by LAPO liaison officer). Your two guarantors must be on ground on the day the loan will be disbursed to you • LAPO liaison officer will also visit your shop to assess it. (Note: This will play a vital role in how much the trader will get because they are going to assess the shop). • After the above processes, you can then pay 10% and 0.5% of the approved loan amount for administrative fee and Insurance premium respectively and you will be trained for two days.
LAPO Loan Repayment Plan and Interest Rate: Apart from taking the this loan without collateral, you are also going to enjoy a very small interest rate that is very affordable. The loan is been given out with an interest rate of 2.2% only as at the time of publishing this post and the repayment is up to 8 months. 1% of the loan will be contributed by you monthly and you can withdraw the total after you finish paying back the loan. If you get a loan of N150, 000 from LAPO, remember the interest rate is 2.2% and you decide to pay it back in 6 months. Total Interest for 6 months = 150,000 x 2.2% x 6 months = 19,800. Monthly loan payment = (19,800 +150,000) / 6 = 28,300 Monthly contribution = 1% x 150, 000 = 1,500 Therefore, Total monthly payment = 28,300 + 1,500 = 29,800 In conclusion, if you take a loan of N150, 000, you will have to pay N29, 800 monthly for 6 months. Only collect the LAPO loan amount that you can afford to pay back without stress. You have to follow your repayment plan religiously because you will be fined if you do not pay back at the right time; the fine should be around N1, 500 daily until you pay.
AB Microfinance Bank Nigeria The bank offers entrepreneurs the opportunity to easily access loans in a quick, transparent, and efficient environment. Loans currently range from N 15,000.00 to N1.5 million; maximum maturity is 18 months; for larger loan sizes, clients are advised to visit the SME section. The Bank does not ask for mandatory deposits/savings and no cash collateral is required. In addition, no audited financial statements are required while collateral arrangements are flexible depending on loan size (household goods, business equipment, goods in stock, vehicles, property etc.). So are documentation requirements. The bank does not operate with borrower groups - you are responsible only for your own loan. All applications undergo an on-site assessment by one of the bank’s lending staff prior to a committee decision. LOAN PRODUCTS • AB Business Flexi/ N15, 000-N100, 000, / 6% interest (on declining balance) • AB Business Plus/N100, 001- N500, 000/5.5% interest (on declining balance) • AB Business Max/ N500, 001 – N1, 000, 000/5% (on declining balance) • Maxi plus/N 1m – N 1.5m/4.5% (on declining balance) For all loan sizes, there is 2.5% administration fee, nine months maturity. For NGN 1.5 million loans, there is 2.5% administration fee, 18 months maturity, no mortgage, private individual. AB Microfinance Bank Nigeria is located in Lagos.
Many banks do not offer small business start-up loans, but only loan to businesses that have existed for 18 to 24 months. If one bank tells you it will not lend money to a startup, do not give up. Move on to the next bank until you find one that does loan to start ups. Many banks do not offer small business start-up loans, but only loan to businesses that have existed for 18 to 24 months. If one bank tells you it will not lend money to a startup, do not give up. Move on to the next bank until you find one that does loan to start ups.
Chapter 8: Biographies of the Successful Aliko Dangote Aliko Dangote first ventured into business in 1977 at the age of 21 years. He started with a small capital given to him by his grandfather, Alhaji Sanusi Dantata. He was involved in trading in local commodities and building materials. Around June 1977, he moved into Lagos and continued trade in cement and commodities. Dangote's business started to experience tremendous success and increase. This encouraged him to incorporate two companies in 1981. These and more companies to follow have developed into the Dangote Group. Dangote Group has its headquarters in the bursting metropolis of Lagos State, Nigeria in West Africa. The Group has earned an honest reputation for quality goods and services, cost leadership and efficiency of human resources. The Group is a very diverse conglomerate with very good revenue. Dangote Textiles and The Nigeria Textile Mills, which it recently acquired, produce over 120 000 meters of finished textiles on a daily basis. The Group has a ginnery in Kankawa, Katsina State with a capacity of 30 000 MT of seeded cotton annually. Aside the $800 million cement factory at Obajana, Kogi State, Dangote own the sugar refinery at Apapa port, Lagos which is the largest in Africa and in size, the third largest worldwide. It has an annual capacity of 700,000 tonnes of refined sugar annually. It also has another 100,000 tonne-capacity sugar mill at Hadeija in Jigawa State.
Besides having significant investment in the National Salt Company of Nigeria at Ota, Ogun State, the group has salt factories at Apapa as well as Calabar, a polypropylene-bagging factory that produces essential bags for its products, over 600 trailers for effective distribution network and goods meant for export can successfully be transported to the respective ports. A vehicle-leasing unit with over 100 fully airconditioned commuter buses is also part of the Dangote Group. It is also into real estate with luxury flats and high-rise complexes in Ikoyi, Victoria Island, Abuja and Kano. Dangote Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the group where yearly he spends millions for worthy causes such as contributions to educational and healthcare institutions, sinking of boreholes and giving of scholarships. The Dangote Group has nationwide staff strength of 12,000 but on completion of ongoing projects, it is expected to hit 22,000. Alhaji Aliko Dangoteâ€™s business success may be influenced by various factors. He seems to be broad-minded. As a self-employed person, with minimum basic education, he proves that business success is usually through strength of mind, honesty, and perseverance. Instead of stashing his funds in foreign accounts, Dangote invests wisely in the productive sector of the Nigerian economy. Alhaji Aliko Dangote serves on the Boards of the National Council of Nigerian Vision, Mohammed Bello Endowment for Justice and
Jurisprudence, Kano Foundation, the Nigerian Economic Summit Group, African Petroleum Plc, National Investment Promotion Council and the Heart of Africa (a management group on Nigeria Image Project), etc. © Data.Logbaby.Com – Encyclopedia of Nigeria, its places, people, histories, attractions, tourism and lifestyle – past and present
Mark Zuckerberg Born on May 14, 1984, in White Plains, New York, Mark Zuckerberg co-founded the socialnetworking website Facebook out of his college dorm room. He left Harvard after his sophomore year to concentrate on the site, the user base of which has grown to more than 250 million people, making Zuckerberg a billionaire. Mark was born on May 14, 1984, in White Plains, New York, into a comfortable, welleducated family, and raised in the nearby village of Dobbs Ferry. His father, Edward Zuckerberg, ran a dental practice attached to the family's home. His mother, Karen, worked as a psychiatrist before the birth of the couple's four children—Mark, Randi, Donna and Arielle. Zuckerberg developed an interest in computers at an early age; when he was about 12, he used Atari BASIC to create a messaging program he named "Zucknet. The family also used Zucknet to communicate within the house. Together with his friends, he also created computer games just for fun. To keep up with Mark's burgeoning interest in computers, his parents hired private computer tutor David Newman to come to the house once a week and work with Mark. Zuckerberg later studied at Phillips Exeter Academy, an exclusive preparatory school in New Hampshire. There he showed talent in fencing, becoming the captain of the school's team. He also excelled in literature, earning a diploma in classics. Yet Zuckerberg remained fascinated by computers, and continued to work on developing new programs. While still in high school, he created an early version of the music software Pandora, which he called Synapse. Several companies—including AOL and Microsoft— expressed an interest in buying the software,
and hiring the teenager before graduation. He declined the offers. After graduating from Exeter in 2002, Zuckerberg enrolled at Harvard University. By his sophomore year at the ivy league institution, he had developed a reputation as the go-to software developer on campus. It was at that time that he built a program called CourseMatch, which helped students choose their classes based on the course selections of other users. He also invented Facemash, which compared the pictures of two students on campus and allowed users to vote on which one was more attractive. The program became wildly popular, but was later shut down by the school administration after it was deemed inappropriate. Based on the buzz of his previous projects, three of his fellow students—Divya Narendra, and twins Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss— sought him out to work on an idea for a social networking site they called Harvard Connection. ©http://www.biography.com/people/markzuckerberg-507402
Oprah Winfrey American television host, actress, producer, philanthropist, and entrepreneur Oprah Gail Winfrey was born on January 29, 1954, in Kosciusko, Mississippi. After a troubled adolescence in a farming community, where she was sexually abused by male relatives and friends of her mother, Vernita, she moved to Nashville to live with her father, Vernon, a barber and businessman. She entered Tennessee State University in 1971 and began working in radio and television broadcasting. In 1976, Oprah Winfrey moved to Baltimore, Maryland, where she hosted the TV chat show People Are Talking. The show became a hit and Winfrey stayed with it for eight years, after which she was recruited by a Chicago TV station to host her own morning show, A.M. Chicago. Her major competitor in the time slot was Phil Donahue. Within several months, Winfrey's open, warm-hearted personal style had won her 100,000 more viewers than Donahue and had taken her show from last place to first in the ratings. Her success led to nationwide fame and a role in Steven Spielberg's 1985 film The Color Purple, for which she was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. Winfrey launched the Oprah Winfrey Show in 1986 as a nationally syndicated program. With its placement on 120 channels and an audience of 10 million people, the show grossed $125 million by the end of its first year, of which Winfrey received $30 million. She soon gained ownership of the program from ABC, drawing it under the control of her new production company, Harpo Productions ('Oprah' spelled backwards) and making more and more money from syndication.
In 1994, with talk shows becoming increasingly trashy and exploitative, Winfrey pledged to keep her show free of tabloid topics. Although ratings initially fell, she earned the respect of her viewers and was soon rewarded with an upsurge in popularity. Her projects with Harpo have included the highly rated 1989 TV miniseries, The Women of Brewster Place, which she also starred in. Winfrey also signed a multi-picture contract with Disney. The initial project, 1998's Beloved, based on Pulitzer Prize-winning novel by Toni Morrison and starring Winfrey and Danny Glover, got mixed reviews and generally failed to live up to expectations. ÂŠ http://www.biography.com/people/oprahwinfrey-9534419
Bola Shagaya Bola Shagaya (MON) was born on the 10th of October, 1959. She hails from Ilorin, Kwara state but resides and conducts her business principally in Lagos. She had her secondary school education at Queens School, Ilorin, and her tertiary education at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria and Armstrong College in California, where she studied economics and accountancy. She started her career with the audit department of the Central Bank of Nigeria before venturing into commercial activities in 1983. Her business experience commenced with the importation and distribution of photographic materials, namely, roll papers, films, and chemicals under the trading name, Bolmus International (Nigeria) limited. She introduced the Konica brand of photographic materials into the Nigerian market and the West African coast. In 1997, she registered Fotofair (Nigeria) limited and opened a photo laboratory service on Victoria Island, Lagos using 100% Japanese technology under the Konica brand name. Today, Fotofair (Nigeria) Limited has over thirty photo laboratories located in different parts of the country and evidently one of the largest photo laboratory companies in Nigeria. Bola Shagaya is also the managing director of Practoil Limited, one of the largest importers and distributors of base oil in Nigeria, meeting the needs of the local lubricant blending plants. Currently, Practoil is building its own state â€“ of â€“ the â€“ art lubricating plant at Kirikiri, Lagos state, which will produce multigrade oils and lubricants. Her business empire, which also includes a huge investment in real estate, spans across major cities in the country and has over three hundred employees.
She was on the board of Intercity bank (now Unity Bank Plc), for over eight (8) years and served in different capacities on various board committees. She is also a member of the recently inaugurated Nepad Business Group â€“ Nigeria. ÂŠ 2013 Hajia Bola Shagaya
Mohamed (Mo) Ibrahim Dr. Mohamed (Mo) Ibrahim, Founder, Celtel International, is a global expert in mobile communications with a distinguished academic and business career. As Technical Director with BT's Cellnet, he launched the first cellular service in UK in 1985. In 1989, Ibrahim founded Mobile Systems International (MSI), a technology consultancy and software business. The company was sold in 2000 for $900million. He founded Celtel in 1998 to build and operate mobile networks in Africa. Celtel became one of Africa's most successful companies with operations in 16 countries. The company was sold to MTC Kuwait in 2005 for $3.4billion. Ibrahim holds a BSc in Electrical Engineering from the University of Alexandria, Egypt, an MSc in Electronics and Electrical Engineering from the University of Bradford and a PhD in Mobile Communications from the University of Birmingham. Established in 2004, the Mo Ibrahim Foundation is an African initiative to recognize achievement in African leadership and stimulate debate on good governance across sub-Saharan Africa and the world. The Foundation publishes the Ibrahim Index of African Governance in collaboration with the Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University. The Foundation also established the annual African Leadership Award, as the largest prize in the world. Ibrahim is also the Founding Chairman of Satya Capital Ltd, an investment company focused on opportunities in Africa.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR In a developing economy like Nigeria, securing capital or finance is a major challenge many small businesses, the ideas of up-and-coming young entrepreneurs find discouraging and do not even know how and where to begin. This book comes to bridge the gap in this regard. The book also has audio and video CD versions, for sale or downloads as e-copies. Victor Ofure Osehobo Is a Certified Infopreneur and information Services Provider, CISP, and Media practitioner. He has decades of experience working as publisher of many Community newspapers he founded namely CATALYST, The CALL and The MOAT and in the American Business media he had a string with VOA News, Washington DC. He has media experience with various Nigerian media such as Observer, Diet, and The News, and is presently the Midwest Bureau Chief for the Nigerian PILOT daily. He is Program Director, Media Network for Community Development in Africa, Founder, Media Forum for Good Governance, and South-South Co0ordinator, Good Governance Network Nigeria. He is a husband and father and a graduate of the University of Benin where he bagged an education degree in Geography.